Pardons in 2013 -What happened?

Nicole Levesque - Bill C223B Standing Committee

Nicole Levesque arguing against the omnibus crime bill at the Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security

With 2012 behind us and with it the fight over the pardons legislation that gave us Bill C23B it’s time to review some of the important things going on and other developments in the pardons business. So let’s review.

  1. Pardons are now officially called record suspensions. In other news, almost no one knows what a record suspension is.
  2. The pardons industry still has no regulatory body. So please be very careful who you sign up with. A good rule to go by is this: If what they’re saying sounds too good to be true it probably is. If it sounds like it isn’t true it probably isn’t.
  3. The Parole Board of Canada is still very slow at processing pardons especially the ones that were submitted with the old fee of $150.
  4. There is no deadline to apply for a pardon. I’ve been getting a lot of complaints from people who have been misled by other companies in this issue. See # 2 for clarification.
  5. The Parole Board of Canada is being much more particular about pardon applications then it was in the past. So if you are preparing your own application be careful and take the time to do it right.
  6. The border hasn’t changed nor has the USA entry waiver process.
  7. Fingerprinting is becoming more and more common.
  8. No private company has any control over how long it takes to process a pardon. Anyone claiming otherwise is still trying to mislead you in the hopes of making a sale.
  9. There are still disbursement costs associated with pardon applications. Get ALL costs upfront. In other news, buyers beware.
  10. We still offer free consultation and I still promise that no one you speak to at the National Pardon Centre will hard sell you. Since no one works on a commission here no one has any motivation to give you anything but the honest truth. So if you need advice, give us a call.

I’m glad 2012 is gone even though it was a great year for us at the National Pardon Centre. We lost a tough fight with the Conservative government over the legislative changes in Bill C23B, but at least the pardon program still exists.

I’d like to thank the Toronto Star for publishing my commentary on the crime bill and other opinion pieces. And I would like to thank my team for all their dedication and hard work.

I would also like to apologize to those people who were affected by the new pardon guidelines. It was no our fault of course but I do with I could have stopped the Tories from making their changes. I see so much value in this program that the bulk of the changes made were totally unnecessary.

All the best to everyone in 2013.


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